I was watching one of the talks Casey Neistat gave at Vidcon this year, and he talks about his love for the 'act of creation', and how he loves his job just like he loves his family. The drive he has to wake up early to edit a video and put it out, 365 days a year. It's crazy, and it makes me wish I had the same.
Look, time for some straight talk, which I'm going to go into here because nobody probably reads this (or knows it even exists). This 'sabbatical' was going to be me getting down and slogging through a really difficult thesis, in an area I barely understand (Natural Language Processing, Topic Detection and Tracking, Temporal Text Mining etc.), and maybe rediscovering the spark, the excitement that made me want to be a programmer all those years, and which (along with a swelling Oasis soundtrack) drove me to create some really cool side-projects while at uni that ultimately landed me the sweet gig of being a developer at my current place of employment. And three days in, I can tell you that motivation is running real low and a huge part of me wants to step back from the challenge and go back to the mundane.
This Masters', which I started in Jan 2015, has been harder on me than anything I've done before. Before, when I was in school or uni, I had 7 days a week and all of my mindspace to understand what I was being taught and properly digest it. Contrary to what people expect from me, I'm not a fast learner. I'm slow and take my time to experiment and truly grasp a concept, before becoming so familiar and comfortable with it that I can run circles around everyone else with my newfound toy. Getting thrown toys (and frankly amazing ones at that, like R or NLTK) and having to balance them with the mundane work I do 9 - 5 on weekdays has been like missing a WT20 finals because you need to water the plants.
So, that's the situation as of now. The only driving force I have is this absurd belief that, since I've finished everything I've 'passed' everything I've started before, it'll be the same this time around as well. Let's hope lightning does strike the same place repeatedly.